• Student Services
     
    The Mission of Student Services and Service Providers

    Dr. Deb Lehew, Director of Special Education & Student Services

    724-226-2400, ext. 4520    dlehew@goldenrams.com

    When students struggle to make meaningful progress academically, the joy of learning may be lost to frustration. Highlands School District's mission is to provide support for students, staff, families, and community so that students may have successful educational experiences.

     
    By definition, Pupil Personnel Services include:
        • School counseling
        • School social work
        • School nursing
        • School psychology
        • School Mental Health Services
     
    Within Highlands School District, these services are organized to meet the needs of all students and to support the educational program within each school building. 
          
    Counseling services are available at the Middle and High schools. Two school counselors serve the middle school: Mr. Chuck Rhoads and Mrs. Julie Seitz-Allman. Serving students at the High School are school counselors Mrs. Beth Carrarini, Mrs. Marilyn Skwortz and Dr. Susie GurreraMs. Kim Hines is the High School guidance office secretary. The Highlands Elementary School and Early Childhood Center school counselor is Ms. Angela Boyer.
     
    Student Assistance Teams, specially trained groups of teachers, school counselors, administrators and a liaison from the local mental health agency (Family Services of Western Pennsylvania) are available at all levels to support students who are experiencing difficulty with the educational process.  Issues that are addressed include academic problems, emotional/social issues, and alcohol, tobacco, and other drug use/abuse. The Student Assistance Teams and the Elementary Student Assistance teams are part of the Multi-tiered System of Supports (MTSS) available to all HSD students.
     
    (To be named), School Psychologist (724-226-2400, ext. 4538), provides psychological services throughout the district. Psychological Services, Crisis Intervention, Crisis Post-vention (support services provided after a crisis), and Non-Violent Crisis Intervention training are also coordinated by the school psychologist. 
     
     
    Nursing Services are available in all buildings. 
    • High School & St. Joseph: Mrs. Shelly Long-Vickers, Certified School Nurse
    • Middle School & OLMBS: Mrs. Melissa Lentz, Certified School Nurse
    • Highlands Elementary & ECC: Mrs. Mary Beth Jones, Certified and Registered Nurse Practitioner and Certified School Nurse
    • Mrs. Lisa Grosholz, LPN, assists Mrs. Jones at Highlands Early Childhood Center. Licensed Practical Nurses provide services under the supervision of the Certified School Nurses.
     
    The district also provides services to students and families experiencing homelessness. Contact 724-226-2400 or view this link for more information.
     
    Student Assistance Services, Elementary Student Assistance Services, and Instructional Support Services are combined under the heading of MTSS. Dr. Debra Lehew, Director of Special Education Services, coordinates this program (724-226-2400, ext. 4520).
     
    Concerns regarding Title IX compliance (sexual harassment between students or teachers and students and equitable participation in sports) are handled by Mr. Chuck Debor. Concerns regarding Title VII compliance (harassment between staff members) are coordinated by the district business manager (724-226-2400).
     
    The Student Services Plan (mandated by PDE Chapter 12) can be assessed at the link below.

     

    Mandated annual notices for PPS appear in the school calendar and on the district website:

    •     FERPA (Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act)
    •     HIPAA (Health Information Portability and Access Act)
    •     The McKinney-Vento Act (Services for families experiencing homelessness)
    •     The Student Services Plan
    •     The Comprehensive Records and Confidentiality Plan           
    •     Mandated annual notices regarding childfind and special education services appear in the special education section.